Do you need a garage for a Tesla?

If you don’t have a garage then you may think twice before buying a Tesla. After all, aren’t you supposed to charge your Tesla overnight? When will you be able to do that if not in a garage?

Well, we have good news for you! You do not need a garage to own a Tesla.

While it’s true that a garage offers several benefits – not only giving you somewhere to charge your Tesla but also helping to keep your car clean and secure too – it’s perfectly possible to own a Tesla when living in an apartment or a home without a garage.

Read on to find the right solution for you, then get ready to order your new Tesla!

Charging a Tesla without a garage

There are four easy ways to keep your Tesla charged even when you don’t have a garage:

  1. Standard Wall Outlets (Level 1 Charging)
  2. 240V Wall Outlets (Level 2 Charging)
  3. Public & workplace charging stations
  4. Tesla Superchargers

Which of these options is best for you will depend on how you use your Tesla, what public charging stations you have easy access to, and whether you have the budget (and landlord’s permission if renting) for an electrician to install a 240V outlet at your home.

Standard Wall Outlets (Level 1 Charging)

When you buy your new Tesla, it will come with a charging cable included. This cable is designed to plug into a standard wall outlet, just like any other electrical appliance.

Known as ‘Level 1 Charging’, this is usually the easiest way to charge your Tesla, as the cable is provided and it’s normally possible to find an outlet within reach of your car, even if you need to use an extension lead.

However, Level 1 charging has two big downsides. 

Firstly, charging your Tesla using a standard wall outlet will only provide between 3 and 5 miles of charge per hour. Unless you leave your Tesla plugged in for several hours, you’re not going to get very far before you need to recharge!

Secondly, standard wall outlets are not suitable for charging overnight without a garage. You may not have a suitable weatherproof outdoor socket, and it could rain overnight when Tesla advises against allowing the charging cable to get wet

Level 1 charging is really only useful for charging inside a garage or for giving your Tesla battery a quick top-up.

240V Wall Outlets (Level 2 Charging)

The best option if you want to charge a Tesla at your home without a garage is to have a 240V wall outlet installed by a qualified electrician. This is called ‘Level 2 charging’.

You can have a Level 2 charging outlet installed either indoors or outdoors. The electrician will be able to ensure that the outlet is weatherproof and you will be free to charge your Tesla whenever you like, regardless of the weather conditions.

A level 2 charging outlet will charge your Tesla at a rate of 30-40 miles per hour. That’s 10 times quicker than a standard wall socket!

Public charging stations

If you’re not able to have a Level 2 charging outlet installed at home – perhaps you don’t have the budget for an electrician or your landlord isn’t willing to give permission – then there are still options that may allow you to own a Tesla without a garage.

Many public places, such as shopping malls, now have electric vehicle charging stations in their parking lots. These are usually Level 2 chargers, so you can expect a one-hour charge to provide about 30 to 40 miles of range.

Obviously, this isn’t as convenient as being able to charge at home, and you’re reliant on public charging stations being available and in good working order. However, if you live in an area with lots of charging stations available, charging your Tesla at a public charging station could be a viable option.

It may also be worth speaking to your employer about the possibility of adding electric vehicle charging at your place of work. This is becoming increasingly common as electric vehicles become more popular and is a good way for employers to show their green credentials.

Tesla Superchargers

Finally, another way to keep your Tesla charged if you can’t charge at home is to use a Tesla Supercharger.

Also known as ‘Level 3 chargers’, Superchargers are 440V public charging stations that can give you 200 miles of charge in only 15 minutes!

Check this map from Tesla and see whether there is a Supercharger near you. If there is, then it may not matter that you don’t have a garage. Whenever you need to charge your Tesla, you can simply visit your local Supercharger and quickly add hundreds of miles of range.